The Gin craze shows no sign of slowing in the UK. Around the world there has been a ‘ginnaissance’ with a significant increase in the numbers of people drinking gin. Arguably some of this is due to the UK’s lockdown and the increase in home consumption of alcohol generally. According to an article from Threshers, it is believed that gin sales will increase by 37% in 2021.
British gins have a reputation for doing well, although there has been an influx of gins from around the globe. Gin enthusiasts or rather ‘ginthusiasts’ can be pretty adventurous and Cornwall is a haven for boutique and independent distilleries. So lets have a toast to Cornish gin, and raise a glass to the enjoyment of locally made gins, that are loved globally.
Origins of gin
You might be surprised to know that gin has been around since the Middle Ages and started out as a herbal medicine before it became a drink for pleasure. Gin was distributed by chemists for the treatment of conditions such as gout and dyspepsia. Gin gets its flavour from juniper berries, but today there are so many other flavours to tantalise the taste buds.
Padstow and Cornwall is home to a surprisingly large number of distilleries and boutique producers. If you’re a gin fan, then Cornwall is one of the best places to try and experience some fantastic gins. For Cornish gin enthusiasts you simply need to close your eyes, take a sip and you’ll be transported to Cornwall.
If you’re a ‘ginthusiast’ you’ll love exploring the history and experience and of course the taste of Cornish gin. With so many these boutique distilleries opening their doors, you’re spoilt for choice. Why not enjoy your Cornish Gin tour in style and let a local create something special for you? Pete Long at Elite Duchy Tours.
Just say you were recommended by the lovely folk at Kilden Mor and Pete will give you a discount.
Here is a littler taster of some of the many Cornish gins available to tempt your Gin taste-buds.
Their gin dates back to 1920, with each batch being made in Cornwall in small batches. The unique flavour has a complex and subtle mix of citrus and floral along with botanicals sourced from the Cornish hedgerows of Trewonnard Dairy Farm. The secret family recipe includes ingredients such as coriander, Cassia, Cardamon, orange and lemon infusions.
Tarquins was set up in 2012 with 12 different gins. They are renowned for their small batch distilling and a wide range of flavours. Their distinctive bottles are signed with the owners signature on every bottle.
If you fancy a gin masterclass then check out the Gin School in the centre of Padstow or take a behind the scenes tour of their distillery. Tarquins offers a wide range of flavours and some delicious ideas on creating some superb gin cocktails can be found on their website.
St Ives Gin
Taste the delights of this unique, family gin in The Searoom in the heart of the beautiful St Ives. The Thompson brothers have developed a very distinctive flavour through much experimentation, using 13 botanicals and boast being Cornwall’s first small-batch cold-compaound gin. Check out their website for ideas on gin cocktails.
How could you resist tasting Clotted Cream Cornish Gin, when you’re exploring the taste of Cornish Gins. A taste of Cornwall with a twist. The Wrecking Coast is distilled in Tintagel on the rugged north Cornish coast. Tintagel saw many shipwrecks, hence the name of the gin.
Using local ingredients, including fresh Cornish Clotted Cream, Cornish natural spring water and Cornish Sloe berries, with many of the botanicals being foraged locally.
They use the unique approach of building the gin around the clotted cream, which creates its unique and velvety richness, the perfect balance to the traditional juniper notes.
This truly boutique gin is produced in small batches (in a distillery at the bottom of the garden), in Tregonetha, St Columb. Handcrafted in a traditional copper still using locally sourced Cornish spring water. The Elemental recipe includes twelve of the finest botanicals. A clean, fresh flavour using locally sourced ingredients and spring water from Bodmin Moor.
The name Elemental was chosen to remind us that gin production is an ancient process which depends on the elements of copper and water. These two elements also have strong links to Cornwall’s industrial and mining past.
A relative newcomer, although its creator David has over 30 years experience in tasting and selling wine. The bottles are inscribed with ‘From golden barley, sun and rain, along our sandy, tide-washed shore, nature distilled, now resting in your hand.’ Smooth and dry. Infused with sea buckthorn, bay and black lovage to give the essence of coastal freshness with a hint of salinity. Perfect served over ice with premium tonic, bay, and fresh lime. Padstow Distilling
Padstow Sea Maiden Gin
Another truly boutique and small batch gin is named after the legend of the Padstow Mermaid. A fusion of fifteen botanicals to create a fresh citrus kick and a delicious saline finish. Careful use of Cornish seaweed and samphire from Padstow Kitchen Garden bring just a hint of the sea.
Find out more at The Little Gin Shack.
Cornish Rock Gin
Rock Distillery is just across the water from Padstow and the makers of Rock Gin. A smooth dry clear gin with a great lingering taste. The gin is made in a very small distillery in small batches. Their Pink Rock Gin which is a very dry gin enhanced by red champagne grapes. Also try the dry and peppery Cornish Gold Rock.
This is not an extensive list of all the fabulous Cornish gins available. But if you are a ginthusiast, Cornwall is one of the best places to try some interesting and unique boutique gins. Enjoy… cheers!